Partners in DEI: Congressional Korean American Staff Association (CKASA)
As the sun sets over Capitol Hill, the dynamic pulse of Washington, DC is felt through a tapestry of events that give life to the networking that defines the city. Receptions, as they’re called, are events where government officials and their staffers establish relationships and get to know outside organizations better. These are an inseparable part of the DC experience and a key moment for many organizations. As such, Samsung is proud to highlight the work of local organizations driving positive social change and investing in their success.
As a proactive catalyst of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Samsung partnered with the Congressional Korean American Staff Association (CKASA) to shine a light on their work under the framework of May denoted as Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. As a Korean-based company with a strong presence in America, Samsung values its origins as a small business and underscores its connection and support to Asian-American communities across the United States by honoring our shared heritage and showcasing the vibrant traditions of the Korean-American community.
Within this partnership, Samsung DC welcomed a festive AAPI Heritage Month Celebration with an exciting blend of flavors presented by a Korean-American Celebrity Chef, Danny Lee, and the rhythmic beats of DJ CYD, who set the tone for a celebratory reception that encapsulated the richness of the Korean-American experience. In today’s Congress, we have four elected Korean-Americans, making part of 16 AAPI Members of Congress, two Senators, and Vice President Kamala Harris who ceremonially serves as President of the Senate, bringing an all-time high representation of this community in Congress, and seeing their influence felt more than ever.
Following the event, Samsung had the opportunity to speak with Kellie Chong, the Co-Chair of CKASA to gain insights into their mission to empower Korean-American representation across Congress:
1. CKASA is a bit of a force in Capitol Hill. Tell us a bit more about CKASA…how did it get started, how many members does it currently have and how do you make a difference?
What started as a small, informal group of Korean American staffers getting together for social events, CKASA was first recognized as a Congressional Staff Organization in the 116th Congress (2019-2021). CKASA is grateful to be sponsored by all four Korean American Members of Congress since the 117th Congress, and as an official Association, we have been able to help increase Korean American representation on Capitol Hill by providing mentorship and networking opportunities, connecting our public service pipeline to the greater Korean and Asian American community.